Election Winner Oddities: State Representative Resigns after Moving to Another State; Democrat Elected to Assembly despite Living in Wrong District

Sunday, December 09, 2012
Andrew Martin

Considering that literally thousands of candidates were running for political office at the federal, state and local levels in November’s elections, a certain number of oddities were bound to emerge from the woodpile, including a couple of Democrats who had trouble simply living where they were supposed to live.

 

Although residency requirements for holding office generally state exactly where a candidate for a particular office must live and by when, several candidates had trouble with them. In New Hampshire, former state representative Robert Thompson (D-Manchester) won his seat back, but on Election Day he was moving into his new home with his mother and husband—1,500 miles away in Sunrise, Florida.

 

Thompson told reporters he was in earnest when he signed up in June to run for his old seat, but he and his family soon realized they needed to relocate. Unable to remove his name from the ballot, Thompson never campaigned and didn’t raise money—but on Election Day 1,925 people voted for him and another Democrat over two Republican incumbents.

 

Also in the Granite State, state Rep.-elect Stacie Laughton (D-Nashua) resigned after controversy erupted over her guilty pleas to three felonies—conspiracy to commit credit card fraud, falsifying physical evidence, and conspiracy to falsify physical evidence—in 2007. Although Laughton believed her criminal past did not legally prevent her from holding office, she resigned to put an end to the media storm.

 

Meanwhile in Nevada, newly-elected state Rep. Andrew Martin (D-Las Vegas) will be seated in the state legislature despite being legally ineligible to run for the seat he just won. The day before the election, a state Judge ruled Martin’s candidacy invalid because he did not live in the district, but election workers did not have time to post signs that Martin could not run and he won by nearly 1,300 votes. Although there is little doubt as to where Martin resides, his Republican opponent, Kelly Hurst, has dropped his challenge because it would be heard by the Nevada General Assembly, where Democrats outnumber the GOP 27-15.

-Matt Bewig

 

To Learn More:

Dem State Rep.-elect to Resign over Residency Issue: Former Manchester Democrat Moved into New Florida Home on Election Day (by James Pindell, WMUR.com)

Dozens of Same-Sex couples take Advantage of NH’s New Marriage Law (by Peter Cassels, Edge)

Martin to be Seated in Assembly after all (by Ed Vogel, Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Only in Nevada: Ineligible to Run, but Eligible to Serve (by Jon Ralston, Ralston Report)

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